What are the Most Spoken Languages in Europe?

Do you know that Europe is the second smallest continent in the world? It is spread over an area of 3997929 square miles. Europe is the third most populous continent with 747 million citizens. The quality of life in Europe is high so people from around the world come here to study, get a good job, and explore its culture.  Due to the migration trend, European culture has become very diverse and the beauty of its diversity is the languages in Europe that people living there speak. Do you know that most common languages that are spoken around the world originated in Europe?

Top 20 Trending Languages in Europe

European Union (EU) is an international organization consisting of 27 European countries. These countries work for common economic, social, and security policies for their nations. The European Union EU recognizes 24 official languages that are spoken by its member states. In addition to it, more than 60 languages are considered regional or minority languages. The number of indigenous languages that people of Europe speak depicts their history and rich heritage. The most trending languages in Europe are categorized by the number of native speakers, and the popularity of the language in the global world. Furthermore, a number of available translators.

Top 20 trending languages in Europe

Let’s have a look at the trending languages in Europe.

Nos. Languages Number of Speakers
1 Russian 120 million
2 German 97 million
3 French 66 million
4 Italian 65 million
5 English 63 million
6 Spanish 47 million
7 Polish 40 million
8 Ukrainian 45 million
9 Romanian 23 million
10 Dutch 22 million
11 Turkish 15.7 million
12 Greek 13.5 million
13 Hungarian 13 million
14 Swedish 11 million
15 Czech 10.6 million
16 Portuguese 10 million
17 Serbian 9 million
18 Bulgarian 7.8 million
19 Croatian 5.6 million
20 Danish 5.5 million

1. Russian

Russian is a language that is widely spoken in Europe. Approximately 120 million people around the world speak this language. People living in Soviet countries like Ukraine, Georgia, Estonia, and Azerbaijan speak this language. Moreover, it is the official language of 4 different countries like Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, and Belarus. Not all of these individuals speak Russian as a mother tongue, however, they speak this language at a native level. The interesting thing about the Russian language is that it is the language of space. Therefore, astronauts learn this language before going into space.

2. German

Another language that is widely spoken in Europe is German. Around 97 million people speak German as their native language. People living in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland speak this language. Moreover, you can also find German speakers in Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, and Belgium. Apart from being the second most spoken in Europe, it is also the most spoken language in the European Union. The interesting thing about the German language is that it is a widely understood language after the English language. This is because English and German share 60% of the vocabulary. German is the second or third language in many European countries.

3. French

French is the third most spoken language in Europe. It is the official language of France and the co-official language of countries like Belgium, Luxembourg, and Switzerland. French is the globally recognized language because 29 countries claim it as an official language. Moreover, 45% of modern English words are derived from the French language. Approximately, 66 million people in Europe speak this language making it the third most spoken language in Europe. It is also the primary language of many international organizations like the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, and the European Union.

4. Italian

Italian ranks at fourth number in the ranking of most spoken languages across Europe. Approximately 65 million people speak the Italian language in Europe. It is the official language of countries which are Italy, Vatican City, and Croatia. Italian represents ancient Rome and it is mutually intelligible with Latin. Italian people are scattered around the world as 700,000 speakers are residing in the USA. It is a romance language and it is associated with high-end brands, fine art, and classical music. People around the world speak the Italian language with different dialects. Even native speakers are unable to understand the Italian language.

5. English

English is a global language. Therefore 1 billion people around the world speak this language and English is native to 63 million European people. Most of the native English speakers reside in Ireland and the UK. It is lingua franca. Therefore, people in developing countries want their children to learn the English language because English speakers are given preference in every field.  With every coming year, hundreds of English words are added to the official dictionary. English is associated with higher education and a good career.

6. Spanish

Do you know that most Spanish speakers are from America? However, 47 million people are from Europe. This romance language is the official language of 21 countries. You will find Spanish speakers mostly in Spain and neighboring countries like Portugal and France. Moreover, 10% of France’s population speaks Spanish as their native language. The Spanish language is influenced by the Arabic language. Therefore, 8% of the Spanish dictionary is derived from Arabic. The second language which is mutually intelligible with Spanish is Latin.

7. Polish

Around 40 million European people are native Polish speakers. The Polish language is from the language of the West Slavic group of the Indo-European languages. Moreover, the Polish language is greatly influenced by Germanic languages which are Latin and French. Apart from Poland, you will find Polish-speaking people residing in Belarus, Ukraine, Lithuania, Hungary, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. English and Polish languages share many similar words but are only related to food. For example, pierogies which are types of dumplings, and Kielbasa which is a sausage.

8. Ukrainian

Ukrainian is the East Slavic language. Around 45 million people in Europe speak this language. It is the official language of Ukraine and one of the other official languages of Russia and Romania. Apart from Ukraine, people living in Poland, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Slovakia, and Lithuania also speak this language. Some people think that Ukrainian is mutually intelligible with Russian. They are wrong in this notion because this language is related to Croatian, Bulgarian, Polish, Slovakian, Belarusian, and Czech. These are also widely spoken languages in Europe.

9. Romanian

Romanian is an Eastern Romance language. It is native to 23 million people in Europe. Romanian is the official language of Moldova and Romania. In addition to it, it is also one of the official languages of the European Union. People living in Transnistria also speak this language.  The Romanian language has a common history with French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish. If you are able to speak the Romanian language then it will help you in learning other romance languages.

10. Dutch

Is it the Germanic language? Therefore, it is closely related to German and English. Most of the Dutch vocabulary is Germanic. So, it has taken more loanwords from the German language than English. Dutch is mutually intelligible with the Afrikaans languages.  Approximately, 22 million people in Europe speak the Dutch language. Most of the native Dutch speakers are from Belgium and the Netherlands.  The majority of the speakers are from the Netherlands whereas 60% of Belgium’s population speaks the Dutch language.

11. Turkish

Approximately 15.7 million people in Europe speak the Turkish language. Turkish is the official language of Turkey. The interesting thing about Turkey is that it is the only country that is included in Europe and Asia. Apart from Turkey, you will also find Turkish speakers in Macedonia, Greece, and Cyprus. The Turkish language represents the history of the Ottoman Empire. This language is greatly influenced by Persian and Arabic. Before 1928, the Turkish language was written in Arabic alphabets despite of Latin alphabet.

12. Greek

Greek is the official language of Greece. It is known as Hellas in Southeast Europe. Around 13.5 million Greek speakers come from Cyprus and Greece. Moreover, you will find Greek native Greek speakers in Italy, Turkey, and Albania. If you want to study the glorious tombs and palaces of the Roman Empire then Greek is the language to go for. The important thing to note is that 12% of the English language is from Greek roots. Especially the words that start with ph originated from the Greek language.

13. Hungarian

Hungarian is the official language of Hungary. Most of the Hungarian population speaks this language. Approximately 13 million people in Europe speak the Hungarian language. These speakers are not only from Hungary but they are also from Slovakia and Romania.  The important thing to note is that Hungarian is one of the toughest languages to learn. This is because it contains complex grammar structures and 26 different cases. Due to the difficulty level of the Hungarian language, many people try to learn this language.

14. Swedish

Swedish is the official language of Sweden. Moreover, it is also the national language of Finland. People living in Latvia and Estonia used to speak the Swedish language before World War II. However, it was not such a common language. This language is mutually intelligible with Danish and Norwegian. It is one of the most important Nordic languages that people find easy to learn. For people that want to learn Scandinavian languages or Nordic languages than learning Swedish is a viable option for them.

15. Czech

Czech is another most spoken European language. Around 10.6 million people speak Czech as their native language. You will not find Czech speakers outside the Czech Republic because it is a very concentrated language. It is mutually intelligible with the Slovakian language. Therefore, Czech and Slovakian people can understand each other easily. Czech is a difficult language to learn because there are many words in this language that don’t have any vowels.

16. Portuguese

Is it the official language of Portugal? It is native to 10 million people in Europe. Portuguese is not only the trending language in Europe but it is also one of the trending languages of the world because of formal Portugal colonies.  To your surprise, only 5% of native speakers are from Portugal so you can well understand that 10 million Portuguese speakers are spread over entire Europe.  Therefore, people living in Europe learn the Portuguese language with great zeal.

17. Serbian

It is the official language of Serbia. Around 9 million speakers are native to this language. The Serbian language is not spoken in Serbia only, people living in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, and Croatia also speak this language. One of the interesting things about the Serbian language is that this language is written in two different writing systems. The formal official documents are written using Cyrillic alphabets whereas informal documents are written using Latin alphabets.

18. Bulgarian

This Language belongs to the Slavic family of languages. It is native to 7.8 million native speakers. Most of these speakers are from Bulgaria. You can also find Bulgarian communities residing in Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, and Greece. It is mutually intelligible with Croatian, Slovenian, and Macedonian languages. People think that only the Russian language is written with Cyrillic alphabets. They are wrong. Serbian, Ukrainian, and Slavic languages are also written using Cyrillic alphabets.

19. Croatian

Latin was the official language of Croatia but the Croatian government adopted this language and gave it the status of official language in 1874. This language is native to 5.6 million people. Most of the Croatian speakers are from Croatia. However, you can also find Croatian-speaking communities in Romania, Montenegro, Serbia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Croatian language is spoken in different dialects. Therefore, learning this language is quite difficult.

20. Danish

Danish is the official language of Denmark. It is native to 5.5 million speakers. Not only Denmark, but Danish is also taught in schools in Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and Iceland.  It is mutually intelligible with Norwegian and Swedish languages. The beauty of the Swedish language is that you can develop new words by combining single words. Just like other languages, Danish has two genders. However, the noun gender is neutral and common.

Wrapping Up

Languages spoken in any continent tell us about their rich heritage and culture. If you want to explore the rich heritage of Europe then you must know the languages that people living in different European countries speak. Many indigenous languages are spoken in Europe. Due to certain human capacities, you can not learn all the languages. What to do then? You can take assistance from professional translation companies. These companies have a team of native translators that can provide you with impeccable translation services in different language pairs.

Learning or taking translation services for trending languages of Europe will open new doors of opportunities for you in different fields of life. Whether you want to study at a top university in the world or want to do a job in a Fortune 500 company, knowledge of another language will give you many benefits.

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